Herman Potočnik Noordung Memorial Centre Vitanje

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Contact info


Spominski center Vitanje
http://www.noordung.info
Grajski trg 1, SI-3205 Vitanje
Phone386 (0) 3 757 4355
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RegionSI-3
Srečko Fijavž
srecko.fijavz@vitanje.si
Phone386 (0) 31 668 656
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Past Events
  • 1 May to 31 October 2010
    Slovene Pavillion at Expo 2010 Shanghai featuring Herman Potočnik Noordung, Starck with Riko, Primož Trubar and World Book Capital Ljubljana 2010, with contributions by Oskar Kogoj, Matej Andraž Vogrinčič, and Slavoj Žižek at Shanghai Expo Site in Shanghai, China programme



The Herman Potočnik Noordung Memorial Centre was opened in December 2006 in advance of the 115th anniversary celebrations of the birth of Herman Potočnik Noordung (1892–1929), a rocket engineer and a space flight pioneer and a visionary who conceived the idea of a geostationary satellite. Located in Vitanje, the town where Potočnik spent his early childhood, the memorial centre showcases his life and work. Initiated by Dragan Živadinov through the Noordung Cosmokinetic Cabinet, the memorial centre is to become part of the Cultural Centre of European Space Technologies (Kulturno središče evropskih vesoljskih tehnologij (KSEVT)), a complex project of the revitalisation of the Vitanje Culture House, supported by the Municipality of Vitanje and the Ministry of Culture. The opening will take place in September 2012.





Contents

Collection

The Herman Potočnik Noordung Memorial Centre is a one-artefact-museum – Herman Potočnik Noordung's book The Problem of Space Travel (1929). The memorial room slightly resembles the interior of a space observatory. Due to lack of physical memorabilia about his life, the interior of an observatory capsule presents videos with statements of renowned historians, cosmonauts and astronauts for instance: Tatjana Nikolajevna Zhelnina, Pavel Klushantsev, Jurij Baturin, Roger Launius, Frederick I. Ordway III, and sir Arthur C. Clarke. Clarke introduced Potočnik's design of the wheel space station to Stanley Kubrick who used it (uncredited) in the film 2001: A Space Odyssey (1969).

Herman Potočnik Noordung

A visionary with an extraordinary technological imagination and an astounding philosophy of existence, Herman Potočnik Noordung was the author of the first strategic plan for the human exploration of space, whose predictions enjoy growing confirmation with each new extra-terrestrial accomplishment in the modern era. Born in 1892 to Slovene parents in Pula, Croatia, he spent World War I as a first lieutenant, assisting in the construction of railway lines and bridges on the Soča and Piava rivers. In 1925 he completed his engineering and electro-technical studies in Vienna with the title Specialist in Rocket Technology. Years of dire economic hardship and illness coincided with his design of a futuristic rocket and his exploration of space-travel technology. Despite setbacks the first notes for a book emerged, inspired by the writings of German rocket scientist Hermann Oberth. By 1928 Noordung had completed a rough draft of all the chapters, and in 1929, shortly before his death, the book Das Problem der Befahrung des Weltraums was published. Running 188 pages and featuring 100 of his own drawings, it discusses gravity and ways of overcoming it, looks at space technology used in everyday life, contemplates the efficiency of the rocket while warning against its possible misuse for military purposes, and envisions a geostationary satellite that would orbit the globe indefinitely with enviable precision. The concluding thought of the fourth and last segment of Potočnik's book is about the drive for nuclear and photonic technology which would make it possible to travel to nearby planets in our universe. The book considers space travel not as mere day-dreaming but as a very real technological possibility.

Programme

Since its inception the concept of the Herman Potočnik Noordung Memorial Centre Vitanje and related events have been closely linked to the artistic endeavours of the Noordung Cosmokinetic Cabinet and developed by Dragan Živadinov (Merger of Art and Science), Dunja Zupančič (Postgravity Art) and Miha Turšič (Culturalisation of Space).

Cosmonaut Jurij Baturin speaks on the opening of his exhibition Meeting With Earth (2009)

The memorial centre has occasionally hosted astronauts (for example, Christer Fuglesang, Sunita Williams) and other prominent guests. In May and June 2009 the Herman Potočnik Noordung Memorial Centre Vitanje hosted an exhibition of Russian scientist and cosmonaut Jurij Baturin with the title Meeting with Earth.

See also

External links

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